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ECIDA Approves $203,000 to Support $3.4 Million in Downtown Redevelopment | Business

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ECIDA Approves $203,000 to Support $3.4 Million in Downtown Redevelopment

Buffalo, NY – Efforts to spiff up the Hyatt Regency Hotel at Fountain Plaza in downtown Buffalo will be aided by a $203,000 sales tax abatement approved today by the Erie County Industrial Development Agency.  West Genesee Hotel Associates, the Hyatt’s ownership group which is led by Paul L. Snyder Sr., is in the midst of a three-phase, $15 million upgrade of the 26-year-old hotel.

In the current $2.3 million phase, work is focused on installation of an energy-efficient heating and cooling system, build-out of a new salon/spa and Starbucks Coffee kiosk, swimming pool and convention facilities renovations, and general technology improvements.  The incorporation of ‘green’ materials and systems is expected to make the hotel more marketable to convention groups.

When complete, upgrades to the 396-room hotel are expected to boost its staff by 60 full-time workers, up to 273.

The ECIDA has a long history of development aid for the Hyatt dating back to its inception in the early 1980s.  In 1982, the agency issued $19 million in industrial revenue bonds for Snyder’s acquisition, conversion and expansion of the historic Genesee Building to hospitality use.

The ECIDA board today also approved a $65,000 package of sales and mortgage recording tax abatements for 678 Associates, LLC.  The group, led by developer Chris Jacobs, plans a $1.1 million adaptive reuse of the vacant, circa 1900 building, which features ornate terra-cotta façade, with three store fronts, and large second-floor bay windows. The commercial overhaul is expected to create three new jobs.

The property, located at 678 Main St., at the North end of Buffalo’s Theater District, gained notoriety in recent years as home to the Groove Club and OPM Lounge. The clubs lost their city operating licenses in 2007 following a series of violent incidents in and near the venues.

The ECIDA board also took initial action that will result in $20 million in federal Recovery Zone Bond funds to pass through the agency to four local redevelopment projects.

The intent resolutions will allow the developers to begin tax exempt work on these major projects ahead of final fund disbursement.

The projects include:

- Baja Beach Club/Marc Croce - $6 million conversion of the long-vacant Curtiss Building at Franklin and West Huron streets in downtown Buffalo to a boutique hotel

- Seneca Exchange Larkin Partners - $5 million for renovation and redevelopment of 635 Seneca St., Buffalo, into a mixed-use commercial facility;

-  Multisorb Technologies - $5 million to expand and renovate industrial facilities in West Seneca and Cheektowaga.  The company makes packets that protect food and other items from damage by moisture and oxygen exposure;

-  Iskalo Development - $4 million dollars for redevelopment of the former Kane-Doyle auto dealership site, at 2780 Delaware Ave. in Kenmore, as office and retail facility.


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